Grade the Trade: Boston Celtics proposal swaps All-NBA wing for former top pick

The Ringer's Ryen Russillo proposed a trade that would send the Boston Celtics Zion Williamson from the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
The Ringer's Ryen Russillo proposed a trade that would send the Boston Celtics Zion Williamson from the New Orleans Pelicans (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

Trade season is officially upon us, as there is no nightly NBA action to keep fans entertained. A recent mock trade sees the Boston Celtics get in on the fun with a proposed capital “B” blockbuster.

On the June 18 episode of The Bill Simmons Podcastguest Ryen Russillo of The Ringer proposed the following deal between the C’s and the New Orleans Pelicans.

Boston Celtics Receive: F Zion Williamson, F Herb Jones

New Orleans Pelicans Receive: F Jaylen Brown

On an NBA 2K surface level, this trade is fun at the very least. It would rid the Celtics of the impending pressure to extend Brown — which they intend to do, per multiple reports — and would net them another young star in Williamson, and a great 3-&-D wing in Jones.

But, we’re not living in a video game world, playing MyGM. There are loads of other factors that go into major personnel moves like Russillo’s proposed trade.

Is a Jaylen Brown-Zion Williamson trade worth it for the Boston Celtics?

In short, probably not, no.

Though Celtics fans (myself included) have been sitting with the sour taste of failure lingering in their mouths for the past three weeks, after watching their team get bounced by the No. 8-seeded Miami Heat, it doesn’t mean that major change is needed at the top of the roster.

For whatever reason, likely because it’s a super-cool talking point, analysts all over have been saying that Boston needs to break up the duo of Brown and Jayson Tatum.

It’s just not true, not yet.

The two have helped lead the Cs to four Eastern Conference Finals berths since Tatum came into the league in 2018 (not to mention that Brown was on a team that made a run there the year prior).

Yes, Boston is a place where almost isn’t celebrated. But, almost may not be all these guys have to give. Tatum and Brown are just 25 and 26 years old, respectively. They’ve got much of their careers left and time to improve. Of course, there’s no guarantee that they do so, or get over the hump to win Banner 18.

With all of that being said, if the plan is to break up the two stars, Williamson isn’t the guy to do it for.

Sure he’s an exciting young talent. But, he doesn’t do a whole lot of playing, which is pretty important when it comes to having success in the NBA. In four total seasons, Williamson has appeared in just 114 games for the Pelicans, according to Basketball Reference.

Final Grade on Boston Celtics-New Orleans Pelicans Proposed Trade

At the end of the day, this trade gets a “B.”

It’s not something that the Celtics should do or entertain. But if it was to happen it’s not “stick your head in the microwave” material.

As far as the prospect of trading Brown goes, this may be one of the best high-reward returns that Boston could Garner.

Though he can’t stay on the court, the 22-year-old Williamson still has potential. Plus, he’s not due to be paid a super-max extension for another four seasons, helping the hypothetical Celtics front office remain flexible with the impending new CBA. Not to mention that Jones is a fine player who can contribute on both sides of the ball.

Russillo’s trade could be fun, but it’s a massive gamble for Boston, who is in a situation that “isn’t broke.”

So why fix it?